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touring Normandy?

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touring Normandy?

Old 07-08-19, 04:53 AM
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touring Normandy?

Hi all,

I'm contemplating some leisurely touring about the Normandie coast this Fall on my Brommie and am wondering:

a) has anyone here on the forum explored this area by cycle and have recommendations/tips/etc?

and b) has anyone here done any touring with their Brommie and, similarly, have recommendations/tips/etc?

Stowage certainly appears to be something of a challenge with the Brommie, but folks do seem to make it work. Carradice makes a pair of panniers (their 'Kendal' panniers) which should fit the Brommie without dragging along the ground ('haven't gotten them yet so can't say for certain)... but I don't imagine that, on their own, they'll provide sufficient stwoage for a week or two's knocking about, so mounting a large-ish hiking rucksack on the rear rack will most likely be in order as well.

In any event, 'would eagerly welcome any insights and wisdom the community might be able to share!

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Old 07-08-19, 07:28 AM
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I've toured several times in Normandy. You wrote "leisurely touring about the Normandie coast". Are you referring to the D-Day beach part of Normandy? There's also the area north and east of Le Havre, as well as the Cotentin peninsula with Cherbourg at the north end. The D-Day beach area from Utah Beach in the west to Sword beach in the east, and then continuing eastward to Honfleur often has a fair bit of traffic. Inland Normandy often has much quieter roads. Having said that, the coast from Cabourg eastward to Honfleur is very pretty despite having some traffic. The towns were spared during WWII and have very distinctive brick architecture. I also biked south. Beuvron-en-Auge is one of the prettiest villages in Normandy. Heading west from there is the village of Ranville with a large British war cemetery. Just west of there is the Pegasus Bridge with a fine WWII museum. Caen is not a particularly attractive city and is best avoided IMO. There's a paved bike path from the Pegasus bridge to Sword Beach. The area around Sword Beach, Juno Beach, and Gold Beach is a mostly built-up holiday area. It gets a bit less crowded west of Gold Beach. Bayeux is worth visiting. Very pretty town which was spared in the war, and has several interesting places to see in addition to the justly famous Tapestry. There are some gorgeous little roads in the area between Bayeux & Omaha Beach. It is very much worth seeking out these little roads a bit inland from the coast in this area. Beautiful landscapes with minimal traffic. We returned to the coast to visit Omaha Beach and Pointe du Hoc. Still, this area overall had less traffic than the holiday beaches near Juno Beach and Sword Beach.

Because of a small bay and marshland, there's no road to continue near the coast without going inland to Carentan. But once you get through Carentin, continuing north and west onto the Cotentin peninsula, you'll find some very quiet roads.

BTW, most of Normandy has rolling hills, as opposed to flat areas. Nothing particularly difficult, however.

It was very common to come across small monuments to WWII skirmishes in the middle of nowhere on some of the tiny roads in Normandy. Also, there are some small British war cemeteries in the middle of nowhere. (Unlike the Americans who buried their dead in two large cemeteries in Normandy, the British generally buried their war dead close to where they died.)

As for your Brommie (I assume you're referring to a Brompton), I can't help you. I tour on a Bike Friday New World Tourist, which although a folder, was designed for touring and traveling, so I have no problem with attaching regular panniers.
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Old 07-08-19, 08:02 AM
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Incredibly jelly.

I would love to tour that area in any manner of way, no less on bike. I really enjoy walking old battlefields.
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Old 07-08-19, 09:50 AM
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I've cycled in Normandy a couple of times, mostly on various routes between Cherbourg and Roscoff in Brittany on a regular bike.

Some nice off road trails west of the town of Carentan.

On the EuroVélo 4 west of Carentan June 2015

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Old 07-08-19, 11:27 AM
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Roscoff Ferry From Plymouth , and then east from there ... it was 30 years ago ..

Online resources did not exist then.. you can find a lot, now..

Brompton touring bag and a back pack standing on end supported on the rear rack,

Or a big British saddle bag is how Bromptonauts have toured ..

Frame builder , Scottish Brompton dealer in Glasgow modified the front bag rack parts

to take 2 small panniers instead of the touring bag .. on the front ..


Last edited by fietsbob; 07-08-19 at 11:41 AM.
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Old 07-08-19, 04:58 PM
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We were there in June. You will need to find the Normandy part of the ride since we rode Venice to Paris. https://tinyurl.com/myfineeurope
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Old 07-08-19, 06:00 PM
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The sun never sets on Brompton tourists.

There are several Facebook groups dedicated to that exact subject, plus countless YouTube videos and Blogs and even a company web page:


Saw one guy going around the world with some small, lightweight bikepacking bags (and a credit card!). Folks like Heinz Stücke pack everything they own. Then there's a dedicated trailer:

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Old 07-08-19, 06:38 PM
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We rode in that area 2 years ago. Got the route ideas and bikes from The 'Coastal Classique' cycle tour of the northern coast of Brittany and Normandy | Brittany Borders Bicycling
Started from Dinan, then St Malo, then Cancale, then across the bay from St Michel (a msut if you like oysters). Out of these overnight stops only St Michel is technically Normandy but if you are riding in the area - highly recommended to visit the neighboring Brittany.
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